Purpose: To evaluate the visual outcome and safety of simultaneous bilateral cataract extraction.
Setting: Stobhill Hospital NHS Trust, Glasgow, United Kingdom.
Methods: This retrospective case review comprised 259 consecutive patients (518 eyes) who had simultaneous bilateral cataract surgery. Surgeries included bilateral extracapsular procedures, uniocular extracapsular procedures performed simultaneously with a different type of intraocular lens surgery in the other eye, and 1 bilateral intracapsular procedure. Outcome measures were postoperative best spectacle-corrected visual acuity (BSCVA), intraoperative and postoperative complication rates, and conjunctival swab culture results.
Results: Eighty-three percent of patients (75% of eyes) with measured preoperative and postoperative BSCVA achieved an acuity of 6/12 or better. Intraoperative and postoperative complication rates were similar to those in previous reports of unilateral extracapsular surgery and simultaneous bilateral cataract surgery. Endophthalmitis occurred in 1 eye (0.19%). There were no bilateral complications that resulted in visual loss. Cultures were positive from 42% of conjunctival swabs; 81% of positive cultures were coagulase-negative Staphylococcus and 10% were Staphylococcus aureus.
Conclusions: Simultaneous bilateral cataract surgery did not lead to an increased incidence of serious intraoperative or postoperative complications, and visual acuity results were good.